<i>"The Name of Our Country is América" - Simon Bolivar</i> The Narco News Bulletin<br><small>Reporting on the War on Drugs and Democracy from Latin America
 English | Español September 20, 2014 | Issue #38


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Dark Alliance: Day One

U.S. Crack Plague Has Roots in U.S.-Sponsored Nicaraguan War


By Gary Webb
Back on the Internet by Popular Demand

June 23, 2005

Read the reports:

America’s ‘crack’ plague has roots in Nicaragua war

Testimony links U.S. to drugs-guns trade

Managing Editor’s Note: Published on August 18, 1996, these first two reports of the Dark Alliance series introduced readers around the world to the players and relationships of the whole tangled affair. Webb identifies the alliance at the root of his story as “the union of a U.S-backed army attempting to overthrow a revolutionary socialist government and the Uzi-toting ‘gangstas’ of Compton and South-Central Los Angeles.”

Here we meet Ricky Ross, L.A.’s top dope dealer in the early eighties, and the men from the Nicaraguan Democratic Force (FDN, the 5,000-man, CIA-commanded group that led the contra war against the Sandinista government) he bought his cocaine from. We see the evidence of the help they received from the air force of El Salvador (a country receiving support from the U.S. for its own massive, bloody war against an internal popular uprising.)

We also learn about the “wall of secrecy” that allowed the Nicaraguan traffickers to operate with impunity. Attempts by U.S. law enforcement to bring down the Nicaraguan traffickers repeatedly fizzled out, leaving many agents convinced that the CIA was blocking their efforts. A DEA agent working in El Salvador documents cocaine flights leaving that country only to have his reports ignored and in internal investigation launched against him.

More “Dark Alliance”:

Dark Alliance Website

Introduction: Gary Webb’s “Dark Alliance” Returns to the Internet

Short video of Gary Webb, included on the unreleased Dark Alliance CDROM (Quicktime format)

Introduction: Gary Webb’s “Dark Alliance” Returns to the Internet

Day Two: Shadowy Origins of the Crack Epidemic

Day Three: War on Drugs Has Unequal Impact on Blacks in U.S.

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The Narco News Bulletin: Reporting on the Drug War and Democracy from Latin America